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Postal Task Force Letter

The Honorable Steven T. Mnuchin
Chairman, The President’s U.S. Postal Service Task Force
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20500

 

Dear Secretary Mnuchin: 

On behalf of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA), the non-partisan, not-for-profit professional association representing more than 26,000 federal law enforcement officers and agents across 65 agencies, we have prepared the following for the consideration of the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) Task Force, as your body’s decisions affect many of our members who are US Postal Inspectors, Postal Police Officers (PPO), and USPS Office of Inspector General (OIG) Special Agents.

For years, FLEOA has advocated for reforms to strengthen USPS law enforcement, improve recruitment and retention, and ensure the compensation and benefits provided by USPS to its law enforcement components are equivalent to other law enforcement officers across the federal government. However, 39 USC 1003 only provides USPS agents and officers comparability to the compensation and benefits paid to agents and officers in the other agencies in the executive branch of government.
To ensure parity with other law enforcement agencies, we recommend:
  • USPIS receive Law Enforcement Availability Pay (LEAP) and applicable pay differentials
  • Be credited for leave and retirement accrual purposes in accordance with that provided by other executive branch law enforcement components to clearly incorporate all periods of federal employment
  • Eliminate unfair USPS leave practices
  • Provide all USPS law enforcement with access to FEHB Insurance into retirement
  • Allow all USPS law enforcement personnel MSPB appeal rights
  • Provide OIG employees Whistle Blower Protections under the Office of Special Counsel

Regarding FEHB insurance, proposed legislation for Postal Reform would push USPS law enforcement into Medicare Part B, making them no longer comparable to other members of the executive service. While we applaud much of this postal reform bill, we are merely asking our law enforcement benefits remain the same in retirement as other Agents and Police Officers. Many USPS law enforcement personnel transfer from or to other agencies, and our inclusion in this proposed health plan will create serious concerns for both parity and transfers.


FLEOA has several recommendations regarding Postal Police Officers (PPOs):
  • PPOs should be re-classified from OPM Job Series 085 (Security Guard) to Job Series 083 (Police Officer)
  • PPOs should be included in 6C law enforcement retirement pursuant to 5 USC 8412
  • PPOs should be authorized to carry a firearm off-duty on Postal Property
Currently, Postal Police Officers (PPO) are NOT allowed to carry a firearm off-duty on USPS property due to an administrative decision within the USPS and USPIS. Thus, traveling to and from work becomes far more hazardous and several incidents have occurred in which Postal Police Officers could not defend themselves and/or were forced to interact with individuals with whom they had just had an on-duty law enforcement interaction. Federal and state statutes authorize Postal Police Officers to carry off-duty. Per Administrative Service Manual (ASM) 276, it is only required that the USPS's Chief Security Officer or Chief Postal Inspector authorize PPOs to carry on USPS Property while off duty.

In conclusion, FLEOA has concerns about the relationship between USPS, USPS OIG, and USPIS. As the security arm for USPS, USPIS predates the Declaration of Independence and fulfilled the audit function before the OIG’s formation. As the USPS struggles financially, the USPIS and OIG need to better coordinate their efforts to identify and remedy systemic issues of waste, fraud, and abuse. Any reorganization of the USPS needs to include recognition of the inter-related challenges facing its law enforcement components.
 
FLEOA thanks you for your consideration of these issues and we are available to meet with your Task Force to discuss any other issues of concern.


Sincerely,


Nathan R Catura

Nathan R. Catura
National President
Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association